Philly March Madness: (1) Mark Howe vs. (9) Rod Brind'Amour

Philly March Madness: (1) Mark Howe vs. (9) Rod Brind'Amour

Over the next few weeks at The700Level, we'll be posting poll          matchups as part of our Philly March Madness competition.                     Examine the       cases of the two fine Philadelphia       athletes        below,    and     cast     your  vote at  the bottom as  to       which   you     think should    advance to         the next   round.   And        as always,   feel   free to explain    your     selection         and/or       debate the   choices    in the comments  section.

With the first round completed, we're presenting our second round   matchups with some YouTube clips we feel to be definitive of the   respective athletes' greatness during their time in Philly. If you   think there's another, better video we should have used, we'd love to   hear about that below as well. 

(1) Mark Howe

(9) Rod Brind'Amour

Who should advance to the next round?online survey

First-Round Results:

East Bracket:

(1) Julius Erving (91.8%) over (16) Von Hayes (8.2%)
(8) Simon        Gagne (77.9%) over (9) Seth Joyner (22.1%)
(5) Eric Lindros  (70.3%)       over (12) Eric Allen (29.7%)
(4) Randall Cunningham  (77.6%)  over    (13)   Shane Victorino (23.4%)
(11) Cole Hamels  (82.1%) over  (6)  Mark     Recchi (17.9%)
(14) Tug McGraw (51.1%)  over (3) Moses  Malone    (48.9%)
(7)   Darren Daulton (74.0%) over  (10) Andrew Toney   (26.0%)
(2)   Chase   Utley (93.5%) over (15)  Andre Waters (6.5%)

Midwest Bracket:

(1) Mark Howe (60.2%) over (16) David Akers (39.8%)
(9) Rod        Brind'Amour (73.6%) over (8) Rick Tocchet (26.4%)
(5) Brian  Westbrook      (93.3%) over (12) Jayson Werth (6.7%)
(4) Mike  Richards (85.1%)     over  (13) Trent Cole (14.9%)
(6) John LeClair  (89.2%) over (11)     Clyde  Simmons (10.8%)
(3) Jimmy Rollins  (75.8%) over (14) John  Kruk    (24.2%)
(7) Lenny Dykstra (51.9%)  over (10) Dave Poulin  (48.1%)
(2)  Allen Iverson (83.1%) over (15)  Jeremiah Trotter (16.9%)

West Bracket:

(1) Mike Schmidt (96.9%) over (16) Keith Byars (3.1%)
(9) Wilbert    Montgomery (59.4%) over (8) Jeff Carter (40.6%)
(5) Ron Jaworski    (83.5%) over (12) Bobby Abreu (16.5%)
(4) Ron Hextall (94.1%) over    (13) Andre Iguodala (5.9%)
(6) Mike Quick (59.8%) over (11) Hugh    Douglas (40.2%)
(3) Brian Dawkins (98.3%) over (14) Scott Rolen    (1.7%)
(7) Maurice Cheeks (51.9%) over (10) Eric Desjardins (48.1%)
(15)    Carlos Ruiz (58.9%) over (2) Tim Kerr (41.1%)

South Bracket:

(1) Reggie White (97.1%) over (16) Hersey Hawkins (2.9%)
(9) Troy    Vincent (51.8%) over (8) Curt Schilling (48.2%)
(5) Pete Rose   (85.2%)  over (12) Peter Zezel (14.8%)
(4) Ryan Howard (86.3%) over   (13) Jon  Runyan (13.7%)
(6) Pelle Lindbergh (51.0%) over (11) Keith   Primeau  (49%)
(3) Donovan McNabb (84.5%) over (14) Bobby Jones   (15.5%)
(10) Jerome Brown (51.8%) over (7) Brian Propp (48.2%)
(2)   Charles Barkley (64.6%) over (15) Pat Burrell (35.4%)

Tonight's lineup: Struggling Tommy Joseph, Cameron Rupp sit

Tonight's lineup: Struggling Tommy Joseph, Cameron Rupp sit

Tommy Joseph and Cameron Rupp, both struggling mightily through the first month of the season, will get Saturday night off when the Phillies take on the Dodgers in Los Angeles.

Joseph is hitting .190 with one homer and 18 strikeouts in 18 games, while Rupp is batting .180 with one homer and 20 strikeouts through 15 games. Last season, Joseph had 21 home runs and Rupp 16.

Brock Stassi will spell Joseph at first base and bat seventh. Andrew Knapp takes over for Rupp behind the plate and will bat eighth.

Daniel Nava also receives a start, playing left field. The first-year Phillie is hitting .346 with a pair of homers and as many walks as strikeouts (seven).

Zach Eflin takes the mound in a meaningful start for the right-hander (see story). He opposes resurgent Dodgers righty Brandon McCarthy (see game notes).

Here are tonight's lineups:

Phillies
1. Cesar Hernandez, 2B
2. Freddy Galvis, SS
3. Odubel Herrera, CF
4. Maikel Franco, 3B
5. Michael Saunders, RF
6. Daniel Nava, LF
7. Brock Stassi, 1B
8. Andrew Knapp, C
9. Zach Eflin, P

Dodgers
1. Andrew Toles, CF
2. Corey Seager, SS
3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
4. Yasmani Grandal, C
5. Yasiel Puig, RF
6. Cody Bellinger, LF
7. Chase Utley, 2B
8. Chris Taylor, 3B
9. Brandon McCarthy, P

Eagles draft Washington DT Elijah Qualls with final pick

Eagles draft Washington DT Elijah Qualls with final pick

With their final pick of the 2017 draft, the Eagles selected 6-foot-1, 313-pound Washington defensive tackle Elijah Qualls in the sixth round on Saturday.

He's the second Washington player the Eagles took in this year's draft. They selected injured cornerback Sidney Jones in the second round (see story).

Qualls had 77 tackles, 11½ tackles for loss and 7½ sacks in 30 career games (see bio).

"I for sure stop the run well," Qualls said at the NFL Draft Scouting Combine. "And I'm actually a lot better pass rusher than a lot of people think. Typically a lot of our game plan as far as pass rushing was to keep the quarterback contained, so I really couldn't get after him like I'm capable of.

"I'm not going to say I'm one of the best pass rushers ever or anything like that — I've only been playing defensive line since I got to college. I'm still learning, but I'm a lot better than people do think."

Qualls was actually a running back in high school, but he said he got bored scoring touchdowns.

"I was 260 playing running back in high school," he said. "I had 1,300 rushing yards, though. It honestly became too easy, that's why I switched to defensive line. Scoring touchdowns wasn't exciting to me anymore, it was just something I expected.

"Then my last year, my coach came to me and said, 'Hey, would you be willing to play some defense?' My mindset was that if I played defense, I could get the ball back. So I played some defensive line, middle linebacker. I was recruited at both of those positions.

"I kind of just did a little research project trying to see what the long term was like for both running backs and defensive linemen, and defensive linemen tend to last longer, have less severe injuries, and honestly on average probably make more money, so I decided to be a defensive lineman. Plus I like the challenge."

With Bennie Logan leaving as a free agent, the Eagles have Fletcher Cox, Tim Jernigan, Beau Allen and now Qualls in the mix on the interior of the defensive line.

"I feel like I can fit into any scheme," Qualls said. "I can do anything you ask me to, I played everything from zero to outside linebacker, so there's not much I can't do. It's just whether or not someone can accept me being a couple inches shorter than the person they prefer playing there.

"But I'm stronger than a lot of people, and my football intelligence is top notch."